The Gillard Government is delivering on its commitment to establish the $20 million Australian Biofuels Research Institute.
As part of this commitment, the Government is announcing that a foundation project at James Cook University in Townsville will receive $5 million in funding.
This reflects the Government's support for the potential of next-generation biofuels to increase Australia's energy security and diversify sources of liquid fuel supply. The Institute's work is designed to drive down the costs of next generation biofuel technologies.
Concerns about global food security and sustainability are driving the development of biofuels from non-food and non-traditional feedstocks including algae, oil seeds and wood waste.
To advise on how best to set up the Australian Biofuels Research Institute, the Gillard Government has appointed some of Australia’s top biofuels experts to serve on the Establishment Council.
The Establishment Council will also oversee the development of a significant new next-generation Biofuels Economics Study.
The study, commissioned by the Australian Centre for Renewable Energy, will inform the priorities of the Institute. It will look at the prospects for developing biofuels that are neither derived from food sources nor will deplete Australian native forests.
At the same time, the study will inform the government on technical developments of next-generation biofuels worldwide and the economics of next-generation biofuels technologies drawing on international and Australian research, development and commercialisation activities.
James Cook University is a leading research institution in algae production in Australia and has begun developing its proposal for the foundation project.
A complete list of the Establishment Council members is below.
Members of the ABRI Establishment Council:
Chair – Dr Bruce Godfrey, Australian Centre for Renewable Energy Board and principal of the Wyld Group
Dr Susan Pond - Adjunct Professor of the Dow Sustainability Program at the University of Sydney
Mr Mehrdad Baghai - Managing Director of Alchemy Growth Partners; current Chairman, Australian American Leadership Education Foundation (Leadership Dialogue); Former Executive Director CSIRO
Mr Peter Broschofsky - Head of Environment and Fuel Conservation for Qantas Airways Ltd
Dr Tony Haymet - Director Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Former Director CSIRO, Co- founder of CleanTech San Diego
Professor Thomas Maschmeyer - Professor of Chemistry, Sydney University
Professor Rocky de Nys - Professor of Aquaculture, James Cook University
Mr Martin Hoffman - Deputy Secretary, Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism